One possible pass rush option I haven't seen get much chatter here is Lemonier from Auburn.
He'd flown under my radar a bit and with all the talk of Jordan,Jones,Mingo,Ansah etc I'd barely noticed him.
Watched some if his games though and came away really impressed and he seems criminally underrated.Had a down year in 2012 compared to '11 but Auburn were a bit of a wreck last year.
Watching him he played almost exclusively as DE in a 4-3 but he should be able to transition in a 3-4.He certainly has the combine numbers and watching him he's relentless and pretty fluid(not Jordan fluid but less lumbering thn say,Damontre Moore)Stacks up against big OL pretty well.He got pretty decently handled by Luke Joeckel but also gave him a few tough moments.Meanwhile against LSU he was being double and triple teamed nearly 70% of he time yet still wreaked havoc.
He seems to be getting mentioned as a 3rd rounder right now which I think would be terrific value although perhaps he goes in the 2nd
Former Auburn DE Corey Lemonier focuses on outside linebacker drills at Pro Day
March 05, 2013
AUBURN, Alabama -- Corey Lemonier had little left to prove on the measurables after his NFL Combine performance ten days ago.
Back in Indianapolis, Lemonier finished third among defensive linemen in the 40-yard dash and placed among the top 11 defensive linemen in nearly every drill.
Athleticism already proven, Lemonier focused on showing teams that he can make the transition to 3-4 outside linebacker, despite his lack of experience in the scheme.
Other than attempting to better his vertical jump -- Lemonier leaped 34 inches, one inch higher than his Combine time -- is Pro Day goals were simple.
"Just to show that I can play linebacker," Lemonier said. "My ability to flip my hips and look athletic out there."
Lemonier, who weighed in at 255 at the NFL Combine, could be an option for a 3-4 team as an outside linebacker.
NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock has Lemonier rated as the fifth-best 3-4 outside linebacker available after the Combine, a position where he was tested thoroughly at Auburn's Pro Day on Wednesday.
"The drills were different, especially the linebacker drills," Lemonier said.
"These are more real linebacker drills, not the basic drills you do at the Combine, and I thought today I proved that I can do that, too."
Lemonier spent most of his first two seasons at Auburn as a straight rush end, but he was asked to drop into coverage on zone blitzes under defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder.
Over time, Lemonier became more comfortable in the scheme, although teams have asked him about his final eight games, when he only had half a sack after making five in the first four games before that and 9.5 sacks as a junior.
"Just getting chipped and double-teamed and stuff like that, most of the attentions were coming to my side," Lemonier said. "I donít want to sound like Ďpoor me,' itís just something that happens, part of the game."
At the Combine, NFL teams repeatedly asked Lemonier if he could make the switch to outside linebacker, and Lemonier, who has spent some of the past two days meeting with teams, including the Steelers and the Bears, said he has no problem making the switch.
"Itís not so hard now," Lemonier said. "With VanGorder helping us out this past season with coverages, I retained so much knowledge.
And the athletic ability Lemonier showcased at the NFL Combine will help teams project him making the transition. According to Lemonier, teams have been impressed with his ability in linebacker drills.
Former Auburn teammate Philip Lutzenkirchen isn't surprised.
"Athletically he's a freak. You look at his numbers and everything he's put up and the way he's able to move at 255 pounds is phenomenal for him," Lutzenkirchen said. "The hand-eye coordination and the catching and everything will come."
Lemonier will return to Arizona and continue training, his eye on individual meetings with teams in the lead-up to the draft.
Whether he's drafted by a 4-3 team or a 3-4 team, Lemonier believes he can thrive at either spot.
"I think I did pretty good with the linebacker drills and looking athletic out there," Lemonier said. "I can definitely move on to play linebacker, d-end it really doesnít matter."